The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 3, July 1899 - April, 1900 Page: 121
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Route of Cabeza de Vaca. 121
distinguish them from the small fine nuts of Galicia, which are like
the English walnuts of commerce, but smaller, and are also much
the same as the nuez de Castillo, known in Spanish commerce.
Never having seen the pecan trees or nuts in Spain, he had to con-
vey the idea of them by description, for want of a common name.
And the description that the trees bear one year and another not,
applies to many of the pecan trees in Western Texas.
All this does not point out the river on which these pecan trees
were found; but Cabeza says:
"When the six months that I stayed with the Christians wait-
ing to put in execution the agreement we had made were completed,
the Indians went off to the prickly pears, it being thirty leagues
from there to where they gather them."24
From the bend in the San Antonio River, a little east of north
from Tordilla and above the mouth of Cibolo Creek, to Loma
Alta in McMullen county, or to Picacho in Duval county, it is less
than thirty leagues, and that region along the dividing line between
these two counties being in the heart of the prickly pear range, it
may be assumed to be where they went to eat these pears; and the
bend in the San Antonio River being in the midst of a pecan region,
it may be taken as the centre of their nut range. So a stake may
be set at the latter, marked D, to mark the pecan groves, and an-
other on the west side of Picacho, marked E, to designate the centre
of the pear range. All round this point there is abundance of
the common cactus opuntia, bearing the greatest quantity of
large red prickly pears, which, when first eaten in the season, cause
a sickness similar to dengue fever; and the cacanapo, bearing a
small pear of fine flavor and a pleasant aroma, and never causing
such sickness, is also abundant there; but this cacanapo pear is
not known further north beyond the Nueces River.
Speaking of this place, Cabeza says: "There are many kinds of
prickly pears, and among them there are some very good, although
to me all seemed so, and hunger never gave me time to select or to
consider which were the best. Most of the people drink rain water
standing in some places; because, although there are rivers, as they
are never settled, they never have known nor designated watering
S4 Naufragios, Cap. XIX.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 3, July 1899 - April, 1900, periodical, 1900; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101015/m1/129/: accessed November 13, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.